Emmanuel Wanyonyi looking for another honour to add to his CV in Belgrade

ATHLETICS Emmanuel Wanyonyi looking for another honour to add to his CV in Belgrade

Abigael Wafula 12:18 - 28.03.2024

Emmanuel Wanyonyi will be praying for luck to knock on his door as he looks to kickstart his international campaign on a high note.

Reigning World 800m silver medallist Emmanuel Wanyonyi has his eyes set on the coveted prize as he gets ready for a tough battle at the World Cross Country Championships in Belgrade, Serbia.

Last season, Wanyonyi started off his season with a win in the cross country and the whole season was full of blessings where he finished second in the 800m in Budapest, won his first-ever Diamond League final, and also won the World Athletics men’s rising star award.

He now looks forward to starting his season with a win on Saturday and maybe it might be a beautiful story for him to win an Olympic gold medal in Paris, France.

Wanyonyi, who will competing in the mixed relay, has all hopes resting on him since he was a vital part of last year’s victory. The 19-year-old won the Sirikwa Classic Cross Country at the start of 2024 and that might just be motivation enough for him ahead of descending on the tough course in Belgrade.

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He will enjoy the company of his compatriots who will also be hoping to kickstart their seasons in style. Mirriam Cherop ran the second leg in Bathurst while Kyumbe Munguti took on the third and they could both join Wanyonyi in Belgrade.

Kenya has named a six-strong squad to select a team from including world U20 mile record-holder Reynold Cheruiyot, who secured silver in the U20 men’s race in Bathurst last year and won the 2022 world U20 1500m title, plus the 2021 world U20 1500m champion Purity Chepkirui and Virginia Nyambura.

The Kenyans will face opposition from Ethiopians who did not impress last year. They have named a six-strong squad, headed by world 5km champion Hagos Gebrhiwet. The 29-year-old won the world U20 cross country title in Bydgoszcz in 2013 and he now makes a return to cross country running fresh from his African 5000m title win in Accra, Ghana.

Joining him in the squad is Adehena Kasaye, who formed part of Ethiopia’s silver medal-winning team in Bathurst, plus Birri Abera, Dahdi Dube, Hiwot Mehari and Taresa Tolosa.